The Big Addition: Framing+

(... the plus is for plumbing, HVAC, roofing, concrete ...)


Framing + Pipes

The first rain of the season came 9/22. Forecast as a tenth of an inch of light rain, we got half an inch, heavy at times. The picture shows what it looked like in early afternoon. Scary! Water will always find a way in. So we had a few leaks. Nothing was damaged, but we spent the wee hours deploying buckets and towels, and the early morning hours up on the roof. The roofers show up in less than 2 weeks, so we're hoping for no more rain until then.

Conditioned air continued with HVAC work, and Brint Plumbing started this week. Work was going on upstairs, downstairs, and under the house. Holes were drilled; drain pipes and ducts were run. We ran into a small issue with the proposed shower layout. Reality vs. plan. No worries, just looks like the shower will have a door now. Under the house, structural engineering comes to life. The remaining 5 Hardy frames and walls were installed, and the walls atop the retaining wall started to get framed - these will help support the main house, a little earthquake retrofit work.

Key decisions made this week included roof color and the location of all of the faucets upstairs. We put a hold on a few different granite slabs for the bathroom, and found some good candidates for bath and patio tile.

Saturday 9/22. Looks like we're in for... Monday 9/24, garage walls! The back wall... Back wall of the garage almost ready.... Just about 3 months ago, temporary... While the temp supports come out, a... Out goes the temp post. This will be... Tuesday 9/25, and we have drain pipes!... This vent from below has finally been... The tub, a Victoria and Albert soaker,... After a bit of tile cutting and... Tub and shower drains roughed in. And... More ducts. Good thing the bedroom and... Ductwork viewed from outside. Notice the... Another room joins the construction. The... Under the house, more structural... New Hardy walls viewed from the other... Here's where the stairs will come down... Walk the plank! What was the living room... Thought you might want to see how these...

Pez and The Final Pour

It's October, and many things are happening simultaneously. On 10/2, plumbing and HVAC showed up, and Whitlow concrete returned to set up for the last pour - the under-house slab and one small footing. You can really start to see what the stair hall and store rooms will look like.

Ok, it's not Pez. It's PEX. This is the latest in water supply plumbing (although it's been around for 10+ years). It installs in a flash. Way faster than copper. It's memory plastic. The pipe is stretched to receive fittings, and once the fitting is in, the pipe seals itself around the fitting. No expensive copper, no torch, no drippy solder. Neat stuff. All of this is to be ready for inspections the next day (both for plumbing and concrete). Meanwhile, the crew got in most of the main garage ceiling (or great room floor) joists. Also, work around back prepared for roofing which is just around the corner.

On 10/4, the last of the concrete was poured - the under house slab covering the stair landing and two storage areas. For the 3 pours, a total of 84 yds, or around 168 tons, was poured.

Just FYI, we added a few pictures from Post Ranch, the inspiration for the bedroom treehouse at the Design and Prep page. Check it out!

The stair hall and store rooms ready for... Looking the other way. Notice that all... Great room floor joists. About half of... PEX in the laundry room... Spaghetti? Nope, more Pex in the... Shower corner. One shower head and one... A little later, more of the platform for... Floor level view of the great room floor... Hardware everywhere - this is the... At the back of the house, setting up to... View of the transition beam from... Whitlow and JMR pumping return to do the... Same tools as last time, just tighter... Done. That's the last of the concrete....

Roof Prep and More

The roofers showed up Monday, 10/8, as expected. They spent a few days putting heavy roof felt over the main house (well, the garage doesn't have a roof yet) and waterproofing the skylights. Andy had done a little roof prep by removing 6 damaged cedar boards from above the front door, cutting and staining new ones. The crew reinstalled them. At the same time, Conditioned Air finished the cold air return from upstairs - quite a massive piece of sheet metal. They also cut the corners off some of the ducts to allow for the transition from the treehouse to the main house.

The biggest visual change is on the roof of the garage. The plywood subfloor for the great room was in Wednesday. Thursday, the east wall of the great room went up !! Wahoo! The last order of business was to lay out plastic as rain was coming Friday 10/12 (a lot, it turned out).

West wall framing started on the 15th. By Tuesday morning, the west wall was framed, and the blocking and header details were moving along. But rain was coming, as you can see. No wash outs, but the crew, sometimes seven strong, had to duck under the house to work inside. So the stair hall is framed, as well as the transitions to both store rooms. When it wasn't raining, the great room roof was framed in and decked with plywood. The east and west walls got plywood as well.

The week of 10/22 saw a lot of detail work. The rafter tails were cut-off and blocked in. The roof cricket, a water diversion structure, was installed, and the entire roof of the great room was covered with felt. The chimney chase started to take shape. The walls above the retaining wall were framed in. Also, a rotten wall at the west side of the house on the garage level was finally replaced. There's just a bit more framing to go. And coming soon: glass and the actual roof.

Andy's contribution - 6 replacement... More felt on the roof, just in time as... Safety sealed for your protection! This... Clipped wings - the corners of the... The massive cold air return. Big and... Upstairs, the door to the bathroom is... HVAC ducts for the great room.... Before the subfloor - also a view of the... And after subfloor installation in the... Site view - Tomorrow, maybe we'll have... The east wall framed in. Next week,... Then the crew won't need to lay out... 10/16: Storm's 'a comin! Hint of west... Stair hall, with storage to the right.... West wall. Why are those  outriggers ... Close-up of the opening for the 8x8... Sunrise. Roof joists partially framed... Plywood going onto the roof.... We haven't shown you this view before,... Nearly done.... Done with the plywood (up to the... Plywood for the east wall.... Almost done.... Done.... West wall with plywood.... The underside of the house is basically... Here's a view of the west wall from... The complete great room roof with felt.... Close up of the roof  cricket . This is... The rafter tails have been cut off the...

Expect the unexpected

The week of 10/29 was a tough week. Every project has its ups and downs. And although the week showed progress, it was also a low point. We've been at it for over 4 months. We had expected to be completely closed in to the weather by Halloween, yet there's no roof on, and no windows on site yet. We are getting extremely lucky with the weather, but we're anxious to get closed in. And then there's the Big Mistake in the Big Addition. The two center horizontal beams in the steel moment frame were installed a beam's height too low. The existing beams were cut out with a torch; replacements were set in the correct location and welded in place. Hours of grinding followed to make old connection points disappear. You can see that at this writing, there's a lot of body work left to go to make this exposed design element presentable. Sigh.

On the plus side, the electrical contractor started, installing recessed lighting cans, switch and outlet boxes, and lots of wire. The supports for the cantilever section of the deck above main garage entry were craned into place. Also, the living room south wall was removed, windows and all, and replaced with something structural. This also involved jacking up the center roof rafter as it had sagged over the 29 year life of the house.

In the week of 11/5, electrical work continued and work on the roof began in earnest. The gutters were installed, and the standing seam roof panels were crimped and cut. The great room skylights went in and the chimney chase was framed. Cosmetic work on the moment frame continued. Everything is lined up for the roof to be installed beginning next week, which will be day 147. We are expecting some windows, too, so it's time for a new phase: Roof and Glass.

The iron workers begin to cut out the... Using a very heavy duty C-clamp to lower... Both beams gone, new bolt plates have... The frame without its center beams.... West Coast Cranes returned with their... The crane will hold the beam while it is... Once bolted, the flanges are welded to... Those holes where the bolt plates meet... The "continuity plate" was... On to more positive things. The crew... The garage level support wall is rebuilt... Moving upstairs, the living room windows... Three out of four windows gone...... All gone, including the wall around... And it's gone.... Briefly, you can see from the entry to... Electrical work begins. Recessed ceiling... While the crane was here, the cantilever... The view from the cantilever looking... Later, the new living room wall, plywood... Compare this to the view at the end of... Compare this one to the view from the... The roof pieces are stacked in the... Great room skylights installed.... Finishing the subfloor for the east deck... The chimney chase gets framed... Chimney chase basically complete, roof... Gutters on the treehouse.... Just a bit more work to do on the south...